(Minghui.org) A 30-year-old man imprisoned for his faith has lost half of his body weight but has been denied medical parole for refusing to admit guilt.

Mr. Tong Mingyu is a native of Harbin City, Heilongjiang Province, and he landed a job in Beijing after he graduated college in 2010. He was arrested on June 25, 2017, for refusing to renounce Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline being persecuted by the Chinese communist regime.

Mr. Tong appeared in Changping District Court on February 2, 2018, and was soon sentenced to 3.5 years in prison. He was held at Tianhe Prison in Beijing for several weeks before being transferred to Tailai Prison in Heilongjiang Province on April 25, 2018.

His parents, who still live in Harbin, were not informed of their son's prison transfer until one month later. The elderly couple received a phone call from Tailai prison on May 25, telling them to visit him, because he was in dire condition.

Mr. Tong had gone on a hunger strike shortly after his arrest to protest the illegal detention, as no law in China criminalizes Falun Gong. He continued his hunger strike as he was moved from place to place.

His parents boarded a train on May 29 and arrived at the prison the following day after a ten-hour trip. Mr. Tong's mother burst into tears when she saw him. He had lost half of his body weight and appeared extremely weak. He pointed to his throat and whispered that it hurt tremendously. His parents noted that his Adam's apple was bigger than usual and suspected that it was a result of frequent force-feeding.

The elderly couple visited their son again on June 6. This time they requested that he be released on medical parole. A director surnamed Xiong said they'd never release Mr. Tong unless he wrote statements to renounce Falun Gong.

Xiong also scolded the couple for “failing to educate their son well, because they allowed him to practice Falun Gong, which landed him in prison.”

Mr. Tong remains at the prison hospital.

Related Report:Mr. Tong Mingyu Sentenced to Three-and-a-Half-Years in Prison

Related Report in Chinese:北京佟明宇被转入黑龙江省泰来监狱